This rich cornbread is inspired by a Basque recipe that I’ve altered to resemble American cornbread.
- 1 cup drained pumpkin purée, canned or made from 1 pound fresh pumpkin (see below)
- 1 cup low-fat milk
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon mild honey, such as clover
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups stone ground yellow cornmeal
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees, and place inside a 9-inch cast iron skillet or a 2-quart baking dish.
2. Whisk together the pumpkin purée, milk, olive oil, honey and eggs.
3. Place the cornmeal in a large bowl, and sift in the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
4. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix together. Do not overwork.
5. Remove the baking dish or pan from the oven, and add the butter. When it has melted completely, brush the sides of the pan with a pastry brush; tip the excess melted butter into the batter, and quickly mix it in. Scrape the batter into the hot pan, and return it to the oven. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until a tester comes out clean. Remove from the oven, and allow to cool in the pan for at least 20 minutes before serving.
To make the pumpkin purée: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Cover a baking sheet with foil. Place the pumpkin pieces on the baking sheet, drizzle 1 tablespoon of canola oil or olive oil on top, cover tightly with foil and place in the oven. Roast for 1 1/2 hours or until thoroughly tender. Remove from the heat, transfer to a strainer or a colander set over a bowl or in the sink, and allow to cool and drain. Peel the pieces, and purée them in a food processor fitted with the steel blade.
Yield: 12 servings.
Advance preparation: This will keep for a couple of days if well wrapped. It does not freeze well.
Nutritional information per serving: 141 calories; 5 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 39 milligrams cholesterol; 22 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams dietary fiber; 320 milligrams sodium; 4 grams protein